Written by Tolik on 25 Oct, 2006
The first settlement at the confluence of two torrents Sallanche and Frasse dates back to the 5th century. Recent excavations indicate the probable existence of a Christian community in the 6th century. Until the end of the 13th century, the small town develops slowly becoming…Read More
The first settlement at the confluence of two torrents Sallanche and Frasse dates back to the 5th century. Recent excavations indicate the probable existence of a Christian community in the 6th century. Until the end of the 13th century, the small town develops slowly becoming the religious and economic center of the area. In the 14th century Saint Jacques church extends its influence on many parishes in the area. The ecclesiastical presence is reinforced in Sallanches by the foundation of two convents: Capuchins in 1619 and Ursulines in 1630; they will disappear in the storm from the French Revolution. An important weekly market (still existing nowadays) brings the agricultural produce from the rural communities; the craftsmen of the city on their side offer the manufactured goods.
In 1310 the first rights are granted to the inhabitants. This communal code is at the origin of the prosperity of the city as well as the settling of noble families which build castles and strong houses there. During all this period, the kingdom of Piedmont-Sardinia was established by the Savoy family. Sallanches, as a part the province of Faucigny, becomes a part of the kingdom in 1355. After the period of the French occupation during the Revolution and the First Empire, from 1792 to 1814, Sardinian monarchy is restored until the final fastening of Savoy in France, in 1860.At the beginning of the 19th century, Sallanches continues its economic advancement with the fairs and markets, trade and some "factories": spinning mills, brewery, and the chocolate factory (fortunately it is still around). The first tourists on the way towards "the refrigerators" of Chamonix make stops in its inns. During the century, the town knows several tests devastators: epidemics, floods and fires. In 1840 Sallanches architectural past was almost entirely destroyed by fire. King Charles-Albert of Savoy-Carignan then devotes exceptional appropriations to the rebuilding. A new city is built, whose Sardinian neo-classic checkerboard plan is drawn by engineer François Justin. At the end of the 19th century it is a modern city with quays (1863), the modern squares like Place Saint-Jacob (1866) and Grenette (1868). Arrival of the train in 1889 links the city to the rest of the country. The construction of the drinkable water supply network in 1889 and of electricity in 1901 brings Sallanches into the modern era. In 1921 Sallanches is declared ‘the Tourism Station’ and a new chapter in the Pays du Mont Blanc (the Mount Blanc country) begins.